US Embassy in Ghana praises and respects Ghana for her peace

Ambassador Gene A. Cretz, Photo: US-Dept of State

The Embassy of the United States Of America in Accra Ghana recently revealed to our blog here at #TheAfricanDream that as a result of a highly tensed atmosphere, it sent a message out to its citizens living in Ghana as part of an obligation to ensure that they are aware of the pending supreme court ruling and did that with no malice whatsoever. The court case had the flag bearer of the opposition; Nana Akuffo Addo challenging the legitimacy of the victory of the incumbent president–John Mahama.

After the US Embassy message was sent out prior to the announcement of the decision of the court, a sliver of Ghanaians living in the country and the diaspora negatively reacted to it as they felt even though the message was pointed to Americans, it made some Ghanaians uncomfortable.

The Supreme Court of Ghana in their judgement which was passed by a panel of 9 judges on August 29, 2013, declared President John Mahama to be the validly elected leader of Ghana with the opposition accepting the judgment and finally conceding defeat in the elections. By 6 to 3, the court dismissed the petitioner’s claims of infractions and statutory irregularities in the 2012 elections.

Election 2012 of Ghana is historic for three major reasons: 1–it was the first presidential elections to be organized after the death of a seating president, 2–it was the first election which had its result contested in the supreme court and 3–it was the first elections in which biometric voting was used, one might also add the supreme court ruling as a fourth reason too.

According to Anny Osabutey; a seasoned journalist with JOY 99.7FM in Ghana and a one time CNN Journalist of the year award winner, one thing is clear, “the nation of Ghana is of age as far as tolerance and respect for opposing views matters and this is evident in the political maturity displayed after rumors were rife that the country might descend into political instability after the supreme court verdict was announced.

Here is how the official YouTube page of Ghana Television reported the news to the world. 

Because of the heightened emotional tension created by the case in Ghana, the American embassy felt in the interest of safety and security of its citizens it had to make Americans aware that on August 29, 2013 a judgment was going to be passed. In an interview on Kapital FM radio in Kumasi on August 19, 2013, the US Ambassador to Ghana–Ambassador Gene A. Cretz–was full of praise and respect for the Supreme Court of Ghana and Ghanaians as was the embassy too in a press release. Ambassador Cretz said however that “we do have thousands of Americans living and working in this country, and we as the US Embassy have a responsibility to them to keep them up to date with respect to current developments”. This announcement was however received with varied opinions world wide and Ghanaian communities in the diaspora felt it was rather unfortunate that the embassy had issued a red alert to its citizens living in Ghana.

Even though Ambassador Cretz in his radio interview said “…there was no intent whatsoever on our part to indicate or predict in any way, shape, or form, that we expect or predict there would be violence in this country”, this blog received a link to a story on OilPrice.com stating that the US Embassy in Ghana actually issued a warning to its compatriots, we were thus moved to delve deeper into the issue reported.
OilPrice.com is an authoritative news source which shares stories and readership with Zerohedge, Business Insider, Forbes, 24/7 Wall St, Arab News, The Street, Rigzone, Mining.com, Mineweb, Minyanville. It has a rapidly expanding and influential audience of investors, fund managers, resource bankers, traders, energy market professionals in countries like North America, Canada, UK and Australia.So when our Ghanaian readers back home and in the diaspora started sending us emails asking us to explore this issue further, we felt their concern and sent this tweet to the US Embassy in Accra Ghana indicating how sad we were about contents of messages we received from our readers world wide:

Our tweet to the embassy received a swift response in which a defense was made about the Ambassador’s statement on Kapital FM in Kumasi with an attached audio of the ambassador himself speaking to the media in Ghana as seen in the US embassy tweeted response to our tweet which was to mainly express our readers’ sadness about the publication on OilPrice.com and other foreign media outlets. The US Embassy emphatically stated that their message was to American citizens and not meant to cause fear or panic in Ghana.

We hope that by doing this story, all will respect the various positions because our sources at the Ghana Embassy in Washington DC indicate that Ghana/USA diplomatic relations are still very cordial since this blog last interviewed Ambassador Ohene Agyekum at his office in March of 2013 and continues to grow stronger.

Written by Oral Ofori

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